It’s not breaking news to say the Wilpons are the worst. Everyone knows this. So it’s really saying something if you can even suggest that they’re actually worse than we all think.
But then this morning over at The Athletic Rosenthal shed some light on why the Mets, who play in the largest market in the country, are not going after Bryce Harper or Manny Machado. It’s not so much out of cheapness (I mean, of course it is) but rather, sheer stupidity?
From The Athletic:
We know the answer: The Mets’ owners — CEO Fred Wilpon, president Saul Katz and COO Jeff Wilpon — do not spend in accordance with the team’s market size. To be fair, their reluctance to go big stems, at least in part, from their misfortune on previous monster deals. From Pedro Martínez and Johan Santana to Jason Bay and David Wright to Yoenis Céspedes and others, the Mets repeatedly have been burned.
Really? Bad deals in the past is what’s scaring you?
I want to know how the Wilpons became successful enough to buy the Mets because they sure aren’t coming across as savy businessmen. Every successful business man has made bad deals. Every successful businessman has failed at something. It’s how you learn from those failures that determines how successful you’ll become.
Apparently what the Wilpons’ have learned from previous bad contracts is… not to give out big contracts anymore?
That can’t possibly be true though because they just signed off on trading for a 36 year old second baseman with five years left on his deal! That’s a bad contract!
If the Wilpons are using the five aforementioned deals as a guideline that’s even dumber. While injuries derailed most of those guys, not all those deals were bad. Let’s break them down.
After the 2004 season, everyone and their mother knew that Pedro was losing it. We knew he only had one or two good years left in him and that he shouldn’t be signed for longer. But if a four year deal is what it took to get him, then give him a four year deal.
Pedro was the mark of a new era in Mets baseball. He had two great years before injuries got him. He made the Mets fantastic to watch once every five days in an otherwise pretty meh 2005 season. His signing went hand in hand with the Carlos Beltran deal, you weren’t getting one without the other, and Beltran is one of the all time great Mets. That’s not a bad deal, that’s a deal you had to make.
The Mets had just collapsed on the final day of the season the year before because while they had a great lineup, they had no pitching. They needed an ace. Johan was the best pitcher in baseball. They went out and got him.
Johan was great when they got him. The team let him down over and over again (hey that sounds familiar). Eventually the rest of the team got injured and the Mets were terrible. That’s not Johan’s fault. It’s also not his fault that Terry Collins let him throw 133 pitches to get his no-hitter, effectively ruining his career.
But hey, he gave us that no hitter! I’d still make that deal 10 out of 10 times.
Nobody thought Jason Bay was good. Nobody. He wasn’t even a player who moved the needle. You know how many Jason Bay jerseys I’ve ever seen around CitiField? None. He was decent with the Red Sox for half a season and somehow the Wilpons gave him a massive deal.
The Bay deal was a mortal lock to not work out and everyone knew it. Mets fans shouldn’t be punished because the Jason Bay deal blew up in the Mets face.
The David Wright extension was a bad one. I think even the most diehard Mets fans can admit that they knew that deal was going to look real bad in a few years.
But he was the captain, and he devoted his life to the Mets, and he wanted to stay during a time when he knew the club was rebuilding, and he took a hometown discount. You have to reward him for that right?
If you’re the Mets you have to do that Cespedes deal every single time. No position player since Piazza was putting asses in the seats the way Yo was.
Sure he was an injury risk, but because of the Wilpons’ overall cheap-ness, Yo was the only player in that lineup people would turn out to see. Giving him that contract was good business even if he got hurt.
That’s what the Wilpon’s don’t seem to understand. Good business.
It doesn’t matter how much money you have to pay Bryce Harper. People will buy tickets, they’ll buy Bryce Harper jerseys, and however much money you’re paying him will come right back! It’s asinine how they’re willing to pay Robby Cano and not Harper when Bryce puts butts in the seats and Cano doesn’t!
Sign Harper. You can afford it. Having too many outfielders and not knowing where to fit Bryce in would literally be the least of your problems.
He’d turn you into an immediate contender and that mean you’ll make money. This is business 101. Again, how are the Wilpons millionaires if they don’t understand that concept?